What is a boiler?

January 20, 2015

It’s cold again in Ellsworth. The coldest months of winter tend to bring about more service and repair calls, which often results in the need for new heating systems. From furnaces to boilers, there are a variety of products on the market that will ensure you’re warm. What’s a boiler you ask? Let’s get a closer look.

Types of boilers

A boiler is a type of HVAC equipment used to heat your home, and it utilizes either steam or hot water to do so. Both use a boiler to heat the water and a radiant system to provide heat to all of the rooms in a home.

Steam boilers

You could compare steam boilers to a teapot. These systems boil water to create steam, which is sent to radiators around your home. Creating more steam amplifies the pressure in the system and pushes the steam throughout the system. Radiators have air vents that open to release the pressure – and the heat – into your rooms. The steam then cools, condenses to water and goes to the boiler to be reheated. Steam boilers are typically powered with natural gas or propane.

Hot water boilers

Hot water boilers run similarly, but circulate hot water around your home instead of steam. When you turn up the heat, water begins to warm up and is transported through the radiant system when it has achieved your perfect temperature. Water boilers are able to be fueled using either oil or gas, however, oil fired boilers are not commonly used outside of New England and the Northeast U.S.

Benefits of heating your home with a boiler

Boilers are known for their nearly soundless operation. In fact, you more than likely won’t hear a boiler operating at all unless there’s something wrong with the system. And, because radiant systems use pipes that are installed in the walls or floor, boilers can provide a more comfortable and even heat. Another bonus is that boilers don’t blow air around, helping lessen the allergens in the air.

Choosing the right heating system for your home can be a tough decision. Although they are often more expensive than furnaces, boilers offer quieter and more even heating for your home. If you’d like to find out more about the high efficiency boilers available in Ellsworth, give Walter's-Eaton's Electric, Plumbing, Heating & AC a call at 715-318-6728.